Does Having High Cholesterol Make You Gain Weight?

Having too high LDL (bad cholesterol) is bad for the mechanisms in your cardiovascular system because it can significantly affect the way of the blood in flowing inside your blood vessels. As well we know that blood is the mass transportation for your body in distributing lots of essential nutrients and even oxygen to tissues and cells of the body. So if the blood flow cannot work as well as it should be, there will be some serious complications that may occur. While high cholesterol is one of many consequences of overweight. It also can be one of reasons why you can gain weight faster.

Why high cholesterol can cause weight gain?

In fact people with overweight are also relatively easier to have increased LDL than others with normal weight – but does it mean when you have high LDL you are also easier to experience weight gain? The answer is yes it does, but how?

The key is the bad lifestyles and habits that cause raised LDL also can lead to obesity.

Many times people with overweight are more likely to choose foods high in saturated fats and cholesterol that typically also high in calories for their daily diet. And we know well that high-saturated fat foods can play a key role to increase your LDL, either for foods high in cholesterol (such as egg yolk, some cakes and pastries).

image_illustration11The following are two major factors that can put you at high risk of having high LDL and weight gain:

  1. Poor diet (high in saturated fats and cholesterol – but low in fiber and other essential nutrients that are required by your body).
  2. Lack of exercise. As well we know, lack of physical activity can be bad for your weight control. It also can decrease your body’s ability in controlling LDL in the bloodstream because with regular exercise you can boost your HDL (good cholesterol). Visit this section for in-depth information about the role of exercise in helping to lower LDL.

Triglyceride is another kind of bad cholesterol. To travel trough the blood, it is carried by very low density lipoprotein (VLDL).

Excess calories, glucose /sugar, or alcohol that you get from your diet can be converted to become triglycerides. These also can be stored in cells of fat throughout your body – another reason why raised cholesterol and increased scale of your weight can run together.

See also why losing weight in obese people can significantly help lower blood pressure and cholesterol in this section!

Which one that occurs first?

It’s not clear which one (between high cholesterol and overweight) that occurs first. Even many times, the increased scale of weight and increased level of LDL can run together.

Overall, both can affect each other. Again as mentioned before, in fact many risk factors that can put you at high risk of obesity also can increase your risk of getting raised LDL.

Foods high in saturated fats – how far they affect your LDL and weight?

Many times, most people think that foods high in cholesterol play a key role in increasing the level of their LDL. There is nothing wrong with this perception because these foods contain cholesterol and therefore they can affect the amounts of cholesterol in the bloodstream.

Nevertheless, many studies confirmed that dietary  saturated fats have much more contribution to increase your LDL than foods high in cholesterol.

So, ensure you restrict saturated fats in your daily diet if you seriously want to stay on your best shape with healthiest levels of LDL and HDL.

And in fact, most foods high in saturated fats are also high in calories. If the calories that you eat are higher than you burn, you will experience weight gain. But if you can burn more calories than what you eat, you will experience weight loss.

And if you just want to control you weight, your calories input should be equal to your calories output – just make sure what you eat meets to your body needs!

What are saturated fats?

They are not only bad for your weight control and cholesterol, but also bad for your blood pressure and overall health of your heart. In general, they are often found in lots of animal products such as whole milk dairy products, red meat, poultry’s skin, etc.

Some oils also contain saturated fats, such as palm and coconut oil. Below is a table of foods high saturated fats and trans-fat (another kind of bad fat):

The simple thing to avoid saturated-fat foods

Instead of focusing on how to restrict and limit foods high in saturated foods from your diet, you can make it simple by exploring what you can add into your diet so thus can help suppress your appetite in eating saturated fat foods.

For instance, try eating more healthy foods (particularly like foods high in fiber) in your diet. If there are more healthy foods that you eat, there is less room for unhealthy foods such as foods rich in saturated fats.